Trading in Anheuser-Busch halted by Belgian regulator, US-listed shares fall

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Trading in Anheuser-Busch halted by Belgian regulator, US-listed shares fall

Trading of Anheuser-Busch InBev (BUD) shares was halted in Brussels on Thursday, as announced by Belgium's Financial Services and Markets Authority (FSMA), pending a forthcoming press release, details of which were not disclosed.

The company’s US-listed shares fell 4% in premarket trading.

The suspension follows an announcement by U.S. tobacco giant Altria (NYSE: MO ) on Wednesday regarding its intention to reduce its approximate 10% ownership in AB InBev, the world's leading brewer, through the sale of about 35 million shares.

Moreover, AB InBev disclosed plans to repurchase shares worth $200 million.

In its statement on Altria's decision to sell a portion of its stake, AB InBev said Altria would remain a significant shareholder and expressed anticipation for sustained collaboration moving forward.

"We remain disciplined in our capital allocation decisions and participating in this offering is consistent with our strategy," AB InBev CEO Michel Doukeris said.

Altria said it intends to offload a portion of its holdings in Anheuser through the sale of American depositary shares in the United States, alongside a private placement of the brewer's ordinary shares within the European Economic Area and the United Kingdom.

Following the completion of this offering, AB InBev has agreed to buy back $200 million worth of ordinary shares directly from Altria.

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